Educational Overview

Furthering your education as a church administrative leader is easy with The Church Network's support.
The Network offers a variety of different educational resources to build your church administration skills, including webinars, e-learning lab, local chapter programming, national and regional conferences, and training for certification in church administration. Whatever your education and professional development needs may be, we have the tools to help you succeed.

14 Areas of Study 

The Church Network’s body of knowledge focuses on fourteen areas of study. These areas help to inform both the certification and CEU programs of The Church Network.  Through these areas we work to bring current focus on risk, trends, and current skills needed to lead a healthy dynamic congregation. National conference, regional events, distance learning, and chapter programs are all shaped by these areas of study.

All CEU eligible work must fall in one of these areas.

1. Personnel/Human Resource

In God’s Kingdom, we are most effective in serving God’s purposes when we humble ourselves in order to elevate and serve others. Jesus certainly understood the importance of managing and developing people. When we build the lives of others and participate in the development of their potential, also known as Human Resource Management, we are acting as faithful stewards of our divine responsibilities. 

Areas of Human Resource Management include:

Employment Law and Risk Management
Definition of Roles & Duties
Search, Interview, Hire, Performance Reviews
Background Checks - Physical Drug Test
Compensation & Benefits
Personnel Policies & Procedures
Misconduct Issues
Contractual Agreements for Employment
Workers’ Compensation
Employee Safety (i.e. OSHA)
Unemployment Compensation

2. Staff Development

God uses people in ministry, ministry effectiveness is enhanced by the competence and motivation of those serving, whether staff or volunteers.  To have the greatest impact, ministries must include staff development as part of their overall strategy. 

Areas of Human Staff Development include:

Team Building/Development - Mission
Improving Staff Performance
Paid and Volunteer Staff
Interpersonal Relations
Communication, Conflict Management
Supervisory Development
Decision Making
Coaching / Mentoring Relationships

3. Congregational Leadership

Effective leadership stems from a clear set of core spiritual values and principles, a compelling vision, a proper perspective of self, a commitment to team building and an awareness of God’s divine nature and presence in our interactions. 

Areas of Congregational Leadership include:

Working within Organizational Structures (Boards, Councils, Committees, Teams, Task Force,  Etc.)
Discernment & Development of Gifts & Talents (Gift Discovery, Interview, Training, Supervision)
Volunteer/Servant Leader Recruitment, Screening and Management
Principles of Effective Meetings

4. Theology of Stewardship

We serve a sovereign God who has divine ownership over all there is.  As such, we are merely stewards entrusted with the management of the world around us and are therefore accountable and responsible both personally and corporately. 

Areas of the Theology of Stewardship include:

Biblical Basis
Stewardship Promotions and Follow-Up
Stewardship Education, Opportunities & Professional Boundaries
Intergenerational and Giving Methods
Planned Giving

5. Office Management

The work of ministry is not limited to just interacting with people, but also managing a myriad of business and administrative tasks that allow ministry to excel.

Areas of Office Management include:

Supplies & Purchasing
Efficiency – Workflow
Hospitality (telephone, etiquette, reception)
Understanding Office Culture
Security Issues
Professionalism (confidentiality, image)
Record Retention
Postal Regulations

6. Information Management

Ministries may often be responsible for collecting, managing, preserving, storing and analyzing volumes of information and data, both digital and physical.  This information is used to provide insight, foster relationship building, spark innovation and inform decision-making.  As such, the infrastructure and systems around the information must allow it to be available to the right people at the right time as well as take into account risk management. 

Areas of Information Technology and Management include:

Office Technology (e-mail, voice mail, copiers, equipment
Overview of Computer Systems (hardware, software, e-mail, Internet, links)
Training & Resources & Policies of Use of Technology
Backup and security of data
Network Administration (Cross Platform Management)
Information Risk Management
Acquisitions (leasing vs. purchasing)
Web Development & Social Media & Digital Communication

7. Property Management

The church is made up of people, but people often meet in physical structures, which require monitoring, maintenance and accountability for their useful life and condition.

Areas of property management include:

Property Risk Management
Custodial Management (purchasing & supplies)
Space Utilization
Energy Conservation & LEED Certification & Green Resourcing
Security & Safety
New Construction and Renovation
Operational Cost Analysis
Grounds and Parking
Bidding & Contracts

8. Communication and Marketing

Effective systems of communication and marketing are critical elements in a church’s ability to articulate its vision and core values, foster innovation in ministry, and ultimately fulfill its mission. 

Areas of Communication and Marketing include:

Public Relations
Crisis Management
Communication – internal and external
Different Practices of Marketing
Management of Multiple Forms of Communication
Evaluation of Effectiveness
Social Media and Web Presence

9. Strategic Planning

Ministries are living organisms that require focused energy and resources to ensure that that God given mission for that ministry is accomplished.  Strategic planning in ministry identifies not only where the church is going, the actions needed to progress, key resources required, but also how it will know if it is successful.

Areas of Strategic Planning include:

Vision and Mission Statements
Goals and Objectives
Measurable Outcomes
Understanding Culture and Change
Strategies for Ministry Expansion
Strategic/Long Range/Operation Planning

10. Financial Management

Proper stewardship of the finances of the church is an integral part of executing God’s vision for that church.  It is paramount that all things are done decently and in order with integrity, diligence, internal controls, accuracy and timeliness in order to respect the congregation, support the fiscal stewardship of funds and bring honor and glory to God.  

Areas of Financial management include:

Church Accounting
Cash Management (fiduciary management)
Audit (Internal and External)
Investment Strategy, Policies & Procedures
Capital Improvement Funding
Financial Software
Internal Controls and Risk Management
Annual and Long Range Budgeting
Funding Options (Alternative Income)

11. Stewardship of Self

Stewardship is the commitment of self and possessions to God’s service.  Self-care is not selfishness, it is stewardship.  We cannot give to others what we do not possess ourselves.  

Areas of Stewardship of Self include:

Spiritual Formation and Biblical Foundation
Professional Development
Physical & Emotional Health
Coaching/Mentoring Relationships
Support Systems & Networking
Time Management
Personal and Professional Boundaries
Stress Management

12. Legal & Tax Matters

In performing ministry with excellence, it is necessary to identify major legal liabilities, matters of compliance and tax requirements and issues facing today’s church.  

Areas of Legal and Tax Matters include:

Legal Counsel  &  Lawsuits
Liability – Mandated Reporting
Copyright Laws
Unrelated Business Income
Recent Changes/Current Issues
Child Protection Policies
Mediation and Arbitration
Legal Audits

13. Christian Perspectives & Theology of Church

The word “Church” gets its meaning from words associated with “assembly” and “belonging to the Lord.” As church administrators, it is important that we investigate and understand the meaning of “church”, its traditions, its various methodologies, its representation in and impact on the community, and the challenges it faces to reflect the diversity of our continually changing world.  

Areas of Christian Perspective and Theology of Church include:

Major Theological Traditions
Theological Methods
Theologies of Church
Ecumenical Perspectives
Cultural Perspectives and Diversity
Missional Church and Ministries

14. Theology and Ethics of Church Administration

Church Administration requires order and adherence to Christian principles; however, it does not mean homogeneity or lack of spontaneity.  As administrators  it is important to reflect on the multi-faceted work of administration as it relates to spiritual gifting, service, theology, mission, stewardship and leadership. Additionally, as a member of TCN, there must be a commitment to the professional code of ethics established by The Church Network.  

Areas of Theology and Ethics of Church Administration include:

Administration as Ministry/Mission
The Church as Business